Technology MeltdownI hate technology.  That might sound blasphemous coming from a video marketing guy, but technology is a double-edged sword.  And when you’re on the losing edge of that sword, it’s no fun!

To make matters worse, tech woes, like most bad omens, tend to come in three’s.  If fact, with tech, when it rains, it doesn’t just pour – it thunders and hails and causes flash flooding.

We’ve all got our tech horror stories: Fried hard drives, hacked websites, email blasts gone haywire.  No one is immune to the sometimes vicious whims of technology.  Of course, the more we rely on our techie toys, the more vulnerable we become.

I’m a Mac guy, but I’d much rather go a dive bar than a “genius” bar.  I won’t even walk into an Apple store unless I’ve had a few shots of Tequila. (Or is it “tech-ila?”)  Yes, even video guys get the techie blues.

But aside from drowning your sorrows, what else can you do when you’ve angered the tech gods?  Here’s a bit of advice from the tech trenches:

Breathe – Don’t panic. Take a step back and approach your technical challenge rationally, not emotionally.  I’ve used every curse word imaginable (in both English and Italian) when systems crash.  Siri won’t even speak to me anymore.  (Although, no joke, Siri once replied back to me: “Lou, your language!”)  Ranting and raving may make you feel a bit better, but it does nothing to solve the technical issue.  Chill out!

Take a hike – No, really.  Just walk away for an hour.  (That’s how long you’d be on hold with tech support anyway!)  Step away from the equipment and get a change of scenery. Eat some ice cream. Go outside.  Unplug.

Vent to a friend – Sometimes, you have to call in reinforcements.  Find a compassionate shoulder to cry on. Reach out to members of your team to see who can help.  With social media, you’ve got an entire online community at your fingertips, so find out who is out there that can help – or at least sympathize!

Go Social – Speaking of social media, if you’re really desperate and not getting the help you deserve from “tech support” or online chat, take it to Twitter!  That will usually get the attention of the offending company.  Just make damn sure that it’s not “user error” before you go public with your gripe!

Find a work around – Winston Churchill once said, “If you’re going through Hell, keep going!”  And when you’re going through technology hell, plow ahead.  Work on something else if necessary, so you at least feel somewhat productive.  There’s always a work-around.

Your technology is going to bite you in the butt sooner or later, so you can get frustrated, or you can go with the flow. Either way, time and patience usually solve all technical challenges. Take solace in the fact that you will eventually awaken from your tech nightmare, and live to fight another day!